Angelic Spirits (30)
Colour Magick (2)
Cycles of the Moon & Planets (19)
Dream Library (6)
Herbal Magick (5)
History of Occult (3)
Magick Book of Psalms (16)
Mystick Exercises (4)
Omens & Superstitions (15)
Power Times (2)
Tools of Magick (7)
Find the meanings of abnormal words or acronyms in our glossary!
Nostradamus: Michel de Nostredame
Nostradamus, (December 14, 1503- July 1, 1566) born Michel de Nostredame, was one of the world's most famous authors of prophecies.
Born in Saint Rémy de Provence, in the south of France, he was the son of a merchant. He was Jewish by birth but raised a Roman Catholic. He studied medicine in Montpellier and was an apothecary. Then he established practice and practised medicine in time of the plague. He travelled through France and Italy many times, or was forced to move to new places. He wrote almanacs (first in 1550) under the name Nostradamus. His series of prophetic verses are purported to represent future events.
Biographical accounts of Nostradamus' life states that he was afraid of being persecuted for heresy by the Inquisition. This inspired him to write his a series of prophecies. These verses have been interpreted differently by different annotators through the years. Many books have been written based on these various interpretations, though the different "readings" of his material have varied wildly from one publication to the next. One skeptical analysis is that he used a series of simple encryption methods, including backward writing interspersed with different languages.
Followers and supporters of Nostradamus' prophecies have credited him with predicting an amazing number of events in world history. His writings have supposedly predicted the French Revolution, the assassination of Abraham Lincoln, World War II, Adolf Hitler, and many other events in history. Critics, however, state that many of these predictions stem from using hindsight to adapt Nostradamus' works to current events, thus making it seem as if he had "predicted" various events.
One of the most famous Nostradamus predictions was frequently interpreted as a prophecy that a great disaster or event would occur in July of the year 1999, and this disaster would supposedly take place in New York City. When July came and went in 1999 without any world-shattering event occurring, scholars of his writings began re-interpreting the prophecy in an attempt to determine its "true" meaning.
Nostradamus' writings have frequently been misquoted and in some instances, even deliberately altered in order to "prove" that he supposedly predicted various events.
Preparation and methods for prophecy
Nostradamus's medical studies included writings from Alberto Magnus, Paracelsus and Cornelius Agrippa. Paracelsus maintained that the soul must first be healed, that the source of disease was the mind, and he used astrology as a tool to "diagnose" how to treat the soul. Agrippa held the belief that man's "conscious" knowledge was useless, and that the societal conditioning to feel separate from existence/nature must be explored and released. The use of occult language in his prophecies suggest a familiarity with Hermetic magic, which has parallels with Tantra and Shaivite Hinduism. Nostradamus studied the Jewish Kabbalah, as well as astrology, which formed much of the basis of his predictive technique.
In Sicily, he connected with Sufi mystics and read "The Elixir of Blissfulness" by Sufi master al-Ghazzali, who stated that every seeker must pass through seven valleys or "dark nights of the soul" which included knowledge, repentance, stumbling blocks, tribulations, thunders, the abyss, and the valley of hymns and celebration. Nostradamus also appears to have studied "De Mysteriis Aegyptorum" (concerning the mysteries of Egypt), a book on Chaldean and Assyrian magic written by Iamblichus, a 4th-century neo-Platonist.
It is also practically certain that Nostradamus consulted many other occult works during his life, including perhaps works lost to history. Near the end of his life, Nostradamus burned all the occult works in his library, and no one can say exactly what books were destroyed in this fire.
Nostradamus employed various techniques to enter the meditative state that he believed were necessary to access future probabilities. For entering a trance state (theta brain frequency), he attempted the ancient methods of flame gazing, water gazing or both simultaneously. He also seems to have used a technique of sitting on a brass tripod and gazing into a brass bowl filled with water and various oils and spices, which, according to an interpretation of C1 Q1, is to be referred to as Branchus, a divinity sometimes equated to Apollo, or an ancient seer by that name. In the Epistle to Henry II Nostradamus says "I emptied my soul, brain and heart of all care and attained a state of tranquility and stillness of mind which are prerequisites for predicting by means of the brass tripod."
A copy of his Prophecies dated 1672, located at The P.I. Nixon Medical History Library of The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio.:Main article Quatrains of Nostradamus
The Prophecies - in this book he collected his divinations. The first edition was out in 1555. The second, with three hundred more prophetic poem, was printed in 1557. The third edition, with three hundred new poem was printed after his death, in 1568
Nostradamus wasn't only a diviner, he was a physician. We know he wrote (at least two) books on medical science (one contained commentars to Galen, and in an other he wrote his experiences about the big epidemics of pest). He was involved in the profession of cosmetics, too (Treatise on Cosmetics and Conserves). He wrote some other works (Traité des fardemens).
Skeptics of Nostradamus state that his reputation as a prophet is largely manufactured by modern-day supporters who shoehorn his words into events that have either already occurred or are so imminent as to be inevitable, a process known as as "retroactive clairvoyance". No Nostradamus quatrain has been interpreted before a specific event occurs, beyond a very general level (e.g., a fire will occur, a war will start).
A good demonstration of this flexible predicting is to take lyrics written by modern songwriters (e.g., Bob Dylan) and show that they are equally "prophetic".
Some scholars believe that Nostradamus wrote not to be a prophet, but to comment on events that were happening in his own time, writing in his elusive way - using highly metaphorical and cryptic language - in order to avoid persecution. This is similar to the Preterite interpretation of the Book of Revelation; John the Apostle intended to write only about contemporary events, but over time his writings became seen as prophecies.
There was a definite prophecy that "a great and terrifying leader would come out of the sky" in 1999 and 7 months, but its fulfilment can arguably be linked to a scientifically predictable event knowable in Nostradamus's time: the solar eclipse on August 11 1999, which is the last day of July by the Julian calendar in use then. The eclipse track crossed northern France, and if the great and terrifying leader was just the moon it "revived memories of the great conqueror (or king) of Angouleme" - a figure in a mediaeval French regional war - just by darkening the sky over France.
The bulk of the quatrains deal with disasters of various sorts. The disasters include plagues, earthquakes, wars, floods, invasions, murders, droughts, battles and many other themes. Some quatrains cover these in over-all terms; others concern a single person or small group of persons. Some cover a single town, others several towns in several countries.
Misquotes and hoaxes
Nostradamus' writings have frequently been misquoted and, in some instances, even deliberately altered in order to "prove" that he supposedly predicted various events. Since the advent of the Internet, many prophecies have even been fabricated outright, therefore enhancing the mystique of Nostradamus. For example, after the September 11 Terrorist Attacks, the following was circulated on the Internet along with many more elaborate variants:
In the City of God there will be a great thunder,
As it turns out, the first four lines were indeed written before the attacks, but by a Canadian graduate student named Neil Marshall as part of a research paper in 1997. Ironically enough, the research paper included this poem as an illustrative example of how the validity of prophecies are often exaggerated. For example, the "City of God" (why is New York City the City of God?), "great thunder" (could apply to just about any disaster), "Two brothers" (lots of things come in pairs), and "the great leader will succumb" phrases are so ambiguous as to be meaningless. The fifth line was added by an anonymous Internet user, showing obvious alteration since Nostradamus wrote his Propheties in four-line verses called quatrains. Nostradamus also never actually referred to a "third big war".
Sometimes, though, the hoaxes are tongue-in-cheek:
Come the millennium, month 12
Referring to the election of George W. Bush as President of the United States.
To verify the authenticity of a purported Nostradamus quatrain, compare the
identifying number (e.g.: C1, Q25 means Century 1, Quatrain 25) against an authoritative
version of Nostradamus' works — which will likely also contain the original
old French. Even the Preface and the Epistle to Henry II have been assigned
numbers (i.e., PF50, EP102).
Chronology of Occult Events
There are no comments for this article. Be the first to add one!